ICAP Leopard takes 10 hours, 35 minutes and 10 Seconds off the BMW Round Ireland Race record

At 05:48:47 hours this morning Mike Slade’s ICAP Leopard took a massive 10 hours, 35 minutes and 10 Seconds off the BMW Round Ireland Yacht Race record, completing a hat trick of records that includes the Fastnet Race and the transatlantic crossing. Near gale force winds – while not always favourable (bad wind is better than no wind) – helped the canting keel, 100ft maxi power it’s way to a record time.

The history of line honours in the Round Ireland begins with Force Tension in 1980, which took 5 days and15 hours to complete the 704 mile course. Legendary Cork sailor Denis Doyle on Moonduster took both line and overall honours in 1982 & ’84 ultimately bringing the record down to just over 3 days 16 hours. While Moonduster took line honours again in 1988, her Round Ireland record wasn’t beaten until Laurie Smith on Rothmans knocked close to 4 hours off in 1990. Laurie Smith’s record stood for 8 years until Colm Barrington knocked a further 8 hours plus off the record in 1998.

ICAP Leopard has set a new milestone of 65 Hours 48 Minutes 47 Seconds and both skipper and crew greatly deserve to be congratulated on their achievement in difficult conditions.

While the race for line honours is over, the race for the premier accolade of the BMW Round Ireland 2008 – overall winner on handicap – is still open. Super 0 class boats such as Alburn, Lee Overlay Partners & Formidable 3 competing with Kinsale veterans, Nadie & Two times winner Eric Lisson on Cavatina, George Radley on McCarthyMotors.ie and Bjaysus, for God’ s sake, amongst others.